The Wood County Court of Common Pleas held its first Settlement Week last week in Domestic Relations Court. Magistrates Jill Varnes-Richardson and Michelle Christie initiated bringing this opportunity to Wood County.
In a court, Settlement Week gives people the opportunity to settle their disputes with the assistance of a professional mediator rather than going through a costly and lengthy trial.
According to Court Administrator Brandy Hartman, “The magistrates knew this would be advantageous to the community and staff in Domestic Relations worked hard to make it happen.”
The court had 24 cases scheduled for mediation throughout the week. Of those, 16 cases reached a full resolution, three cases reached a partial resolution, four cases scheduled another mediation session to continue to resolve their dispute, and one case settled prior to the scheduled mediation.
Attorneys Colleen Dooley, Fred Matthews, Martha Riewaldt, and Kristin Wacha served as mediators.
Judges Mary “Molly” Mack, Matthew Reger, and Joel Kuhlman support this opportunity for the public. Settlement Week streamlines the legal process, reduces costs, minimizes emotional strain, and provides families with more influence over the outcomes of their disputes.
Read the complete article here.
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